If your home has central heating, it uses a furnace or heat pump to provide warmth and comfort throughout your home. When your heating system stops working, it can be a major inconvenience. Problems can happen for multiple reasons, from a mechanical failure, a problem with the solid-state controls, to a cracked heat exchanger.
Here are some common, easily fixable problems as to why your furnace is not turning on.
Tripped breaker or shut off switch in your Harrisonburg home
Often-times, the only problem with your furnace was it was accidently turned off. This is especially true if your furnace is in an attic, or basement near where holiday decorations or other seasonal items are kept. Look for a standard wall switch on or near the furnace – all furnaces, no matter what type, have an emergency shut off switch.
Make sure it is in the “on” position.
Check the breaker or fuse box.
If the furnace breaker is tripped and continues to trip, do not reset it. Contact a professional technician from Mountain Valley Home Comfort to determine why it keeps tripping the breaker.
Examine the front door or access panel of the furnace to make sure it is secure and attached properly. All models have a “push-in” switch or door safety switch, which must be fully depressed for the furnace to operate. If the door is not securely in place, it can cause the furnace or air handler to not operate.
Check your gas pressure
Just as the shut-off switch can get bumped and accidentally flipped off, the gas valve could also be accidently turned off. Trace the gas line back to the furnace, if you see the handle or switch on the gas valve is perpendicular to the gas pipe, it is turned off. Turn the switch on the valve so it runs parallel with the gas line, allowing gas to flow.
Check the thermostat to make sure it is calling for heat, which will make the furnace come on. Verify it is set to “heat” mode and not “cool” mode. Check the temperature setting and set the thermostat 3-5 degrees higher than what the display on the thermostats shows. If your heating system is working properly, it should come on.
Check the batteries in the thermostat. If you had a power surge, but the batteries in your thermostat are dead, the furnace will not come back on.
Harrisonburg residents, Clogged Filters cause problems
Keeping up with regular maintenance with Mountain Valley Home Comfort, will help keep an eye on the condition of your air filters. Clogged filters can cause the furnace to shut down and lead to more serious complications with your HVAC equipment.
Dirty filters restrict proper air flow, which will cause the heat exchanger to overheat. This can lead to premature heat exchanger failure and may cause it to shut off before your set temperature is reached.
Obstructed flue vent
Sometimes birds can build nests or other types of debris will clog the flue vent pipe which removes furnace gas exhaust. If the flue vent pipe becomes obstructed, it will cause your furnace to shut down for safety reasons.
Clear drain lines
Typically, condensate drain lines are problematic in the summer; however, if you own a high-efficiency furnace, several gallons of water a day can be produced even in the winter. Check the condensate drain line for sediment or debris. A professional service provider can clean a condensate drain line as part of a regular maintenance program.
These are just a few common issues which can result in your heating system shutting down at the most inopportune time.
Sign up now for a heating and cooling system maintenance plan with Mountain Valley Home Comfort, we have been Harrisonburg’s trusted source since 1984.